About Literacy Volunteers
Every person in Leon County will have the literacy skills needed to independently pursue life goals, support one’s family and actively participate in the community.
What: Literacy Volunteers of Leon County (LVLC) trains and supports volunteers who work one-to-one with adults and families, helping them to learn how to read and write, do math, or speak English (ESOL) There is no fee for services. Where: Literacy and ESOL tutors teach adults and families at the LeRoy Collins Leon County Public Library and at the six branch libraries. LVLC administrative offices are on the third floor of the LeRoy Collins Leon County Public Library, 200 W. Park Ave, Tallahassee, FL. When: Tutors and students arrange their weekly 1-2 hour sessions on a day and time a public library is open – that can be seven days a week, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. ESOL conversation groups meet weekly. Who: LVLC is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and increase literacy in our community. LVLC is supported, in part, by the Leon County Board of Commissioners, LeRoy Collins Leon County Public Library System, Friends of the Leon County Public Library, and United Way of the Big Bend. You can support LVLC now by donating online. How: LVLC staff are professional certified program coordinators who train and support volunteer tutors, assess and monitor student progress and oversee two learning labs with computers and resource materials for tutors and students. Staff organize frequent events to promote adult and family literacy, including ESOL, in Leon County. The LVLC Board of Directors — who are community volunteers with a variety of talents — promote adult and family literacy, including ESOL, by setting LVLC policy, overseeing operations, promoting LVLC, and raising money. Why: Literacy Volunteers of Leon County (LVLC) was founded in 1980 by the Outreach Services Manager for the LeRoy Collins Leon County Public Library. The organization began with fewer than 20 students; now LVLC serves more than 400 students annually. In 1982, Literacy Volunteers incorporated when it affiliated with Literacy Volunteers of America. October 2002, Literacy Volunteers of America and Laubach Literacy International merged to form a new organization, ProLiteracy America. LVLC is proud to be an affiliate of ProLiteracy America.
Rhonda Cooper, Program Director, has an M.A. in TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) from the University of Idaho. She taught English for many years in several different countries. She was the Director of the Intensive English Program at the American University of Armenia, before returning to the US and working in test development for the Florida Department of Education. Initially hired as the ESOL program coordinator, Rhonda has been the Program Director for LVLC since 2006.
Family Literacy Program Coordinator
Alden Field, Family Literacy Program Coordinator, has M.A.s in Eastern Classics and Liberal Arts from St. John’s College and is a certified Adult Basic Literacy tutor trainer with ProLiteracy. He started working with Literacy Volunteers of Leon County while serving a term as an AmeriCorps VISTA member in 2005. He assumed the role of Program Coordinator for the Family Literacy Program in 2006.
ESOL Program Coordinator
Karen Strange, ESOL Program Coordinator, has an M.A. in Linguistics from the University of Wuerzburg. She has worked as a language instructor for more than 25 years and is a certified ESOL tutor trainer through ProLiteracy. She has been LVLC’s ESOL Program Coordinator since 2006.
Marian Valach, Administrative Assistant, has been a vital member of LVLC since 1999. She has served as an Adult Literacy tutor and office volunteer.
LVLC Board of Directors
Barbara Clark, MA
Amelia Anderson, Ph.D, MLIS
Nathalie Pierre, MBA, CFE
Penny Young, MA
Marian Berndt, MS
Wachell McKendrick, Ph.D
LCPL Extension Services Manager, Ex-Officio Member